Ceil Masella: Open Letter to the Penn State Board of Trustees

This letter was featured as an advertisement in the November 16, 2012 Centre Daily Times

The booing that occurred at the Ohio State game when Rodney Erickson and Dave Joyner were introduced at halftime certainly was an emotional display of the lingering sad state of affairs at Penn State.However, it should have enlightened each and every board member as to how Penn State fans, students and alumni alike, feel about the actions of the Administration and the Board over the last year.Make no mistake about it -those boos were also for most of you, too.Those overwhelming and spontaneous sounds of disapproval should have acted as a wake up call to each and every member of the Board that you have been functioning in a vacuum, blocking out the reality of the feelings of a majority of Penn Staters.The members of the Board have helped each other to maintain the misperception that there are just a few individuals or groups of individuals who just cannot “move forward.”I heard more than just a few angry individuals on that Saturday night.

In telling us to “move forward,” you are telling us to completely forget what you have done to destroy that which we hold dear.Believe me; it is not in our nature to stand idly by, while horrific wrongs are committed right before our eyes.You see, you are not asking us to move forward.You are asking us to step aside while you continue the work of justifying your vindictive acts of November 9, 2011.You want us to forget about 61 years of dedication and decency from Joe Paterno and believe that he would jeopardize the well-being of a child.As you are well aware, this is not how he lived his life.You want us to stay silent while we watch our beloved football team, a group of young men who possess courage and maturity beyond their years, suffer the consequences of NCAA sanctions, which you did not have the moral fiber to appeal.You want us to accept and defend the Freeh Report, an incomplete document which was irresponsibly written by a man with questionable integrity and which lacks hard evidence to back up its slanderous claims against good and decent men. You want us to forget a dramatic, nationally televised press conference by Mr. Freeh which does not match the contents of his report, but which sadly serves as the basis by which Penn State is judged by the nation.(By the way, I was present at that press conference.I saw no official representative of Penn State in attendance.As far as I could see, it appeared that Mr. Freeh was allowed to run rampant in his accusations, while tons of television cameras were fixed on him.)

I cannot, and will not move past these injustices.It is not in my nature.I have always defended what is right and worked against that which is not fair.I will not stand down on the issues, which have hurt my fellow Penn Staters and me.You have not comprehended that there are many, thousands of people who feel exactly as I do.You should have defended our University from the very beginning. Do you honestly believe in your heart that anyone at Penn State knowingly covered up for Jerry Sandusky to protect the football program?I believe that Penn State has proudly maintained one of the most balanced, honest football programs in the nation.This has been proven time and time again, and yet the Board of Trustees has allowed the nation to believe otherwise.

I think I can speak for many other Penn Staters when I ask that you begin to take steps to restore dignity to Penn State.A good way to start this process would be to carefully review the Freeh Report and publicly acknowledge its obvious flaws and faulty conclusions.If you do not feel comfortable doing this, then I would recommend that you consider stepping aside and afford someone else the opportunity to do so…for the Glory of Old State.

Ceil Masella – Class of 1972

3 thoughts on “Ceil Masella: Open Letter to the Penn State Board of Trustees

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